From a distance, looking at the TV tower a-top Mont du Chat – more than any climb I know – it seems impossible that it is cycleable. I love this climb.
Often I write that “I felt strong” – well today I felt weak as a kitten. Partly because I was tired, partly because I had been riding in the heat for over an hour before the big climb started and partly because Mont du Chat is a monster. Today, I did this great loop in the opposite direction of usual – climbing the back, west side.
The route starts on the shore of Lac Bourget (biggest lake in France) and climbs the Col du Chat – a beautiful 5 km climb – overlooking the lake. I did the last km with a nice and chatty 71 year old who was very fit! Descending from the Col leads to beautiful, quiet rolling roads on the other side of the mountain. Leading to the back side of Mont du Chat.
Both sides of this climb are incredibly steep. This west side has the last 9 kms averaging 10.5% with the last 2 kms a leg crushing 12% – yikes! And its the easy side. I really struggled today, but was thrilled to see the top.
See here for details of the better know east side.
Sweet! New Col Sign.
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